LEE GREENWOOD is aiming for his first win as Dewsbury boss over fiercest rivals Batley when the two sides meet this weekend.
It’s the fourth time that the Heavy Woollen teams have come together this campaign, including the pre-season Boxing Day game.
The Bulldogs have won all three of those meetings, taking victory in the annual festive fixture 16-10, triumphing 20-8 with 12 men on Good Friday, and then winning 30-14 at the Summer Bash in June.
With just four games remaining of the season, this fixture has added importance: neither side is safe from relegation yet, and the winners will be ahead of their rivals in the league table with the Rams just one point behind the Bulldogs.
Heading into the clash at the Fox’s Biscuits Stadium on Sunday (kick-off 3pm), Greenwood admits that he has personal motivation for wanting his side to come out on top.
“I’ve not beaten Batley as Dewsbury coach yet. I’ve had three games, including the Boxing Day game, and we’ve lost each one so I do want to win one,” said the head coach.
“It keeps the fans happy and onside but just in terms of the league table, if we win we go back above Batley.
“There’s a lot riding on it. The team that wins will definitely be safe then, so it’ll be a big sigh of relief for the winner and it keeps the team that loses under slight pressure and looking over their shoulders.
“I’ll be honest, I don’t think either team is going to go down. But it’s not mathematically done yet, and we’d like to pick up a win out of these next few (games).”
Recent performances have offered Greenwood plenty of encouragement, with last weekend’s last-gasp 25-24 defeat to Featherstone providing another “solid performance” if not points.
He is aiming to finish the season on a high and says another strong display will be needed to compete with their closest rivals.
“We can probably say it’s been six solid performances in a row, where we’ve either taken points or should have taken points,” said Greenwood.
“We’ll hopefully extend that run of performances now to the end of the season, and obviously we need to continue it this week to have a chance of beating Batley.”
Hookers Sam Day and Dom Speakman both took knocks in the defeat to Featherstone which aren’t thought to be serious, while Robbie Ward nears his return in that position to boost their options.